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Lord George Gordon's Conversion to Judaism

Israel Solomons

<plain_text><page sequence="1">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. By ISRAEL SOLOMONS. (Paper read before the Jewish Historical Society of England, June 2, 1913) Lord George Gordon was born on the 26th of December 1751, in Upper Grosvenor Street, London. He was a younger son of Cosmo George, third Duke of Gordon. King George II was his godfather. As a youth he spent much of his time in Scotland, where he may have imbibed the spirit of intolerance which he in after life exhibited towards Roman Catholicism. While still in petticoats he received a commission in the army as ensign. This system of place-giving, and the holding of sinecure offices through family influence, he attacked with the utmost severity when he arrived at manhood. He left the army and joined the navy; and at the age of eighteen we find him cruising round the West India Islands, as a midshipman under Lord Sandwich. It was at this time that his strong love for freedom first manifested itself, and he discussed with the Governor of Jamaica the cruel treatment of the negroes and the injustice of slavery in general. He was keenly devoted to his profession, and on March 23, 1772, he passed his examination for the office of lieu? tenant. He applied to Lord Sandwich for the command of a ship. The presumptuous request of so young an officer was not refused, but a decision was delayed on various pretexts. Gordon, seeing he was being trifled with, resigned his commission and returned to Scotland. Politics now began to absorb his attention, and he decided to enter Parliament. He contested Inverness-shire against General Fraser of Lovat, the old member. Wearing Highland dress and speaking Gaelic, he canvassed the whole of the shire; and on occasion played on the 222</page><page sequence="2">Appendix No. 22 LORD GEORGE GORDON</page><page sequence="3">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 223 bagpipe to soothe the savage breast of a dubious voter. The crowning feat of his election campaign was a magnificent ball, which was graced by the presence of fifteen lovely Highland lassies who had been brought in his yacht from the Isle of Skye. General Fraser became alarmed for the safety of his seat. Influence was brought to bear on Gordon by the Duke, his brother, and Lord Lovat, the father of his opponent, His candidature was withdrawn, and the seat of Ludgershall, Wiltshire, was purchased for him by his rival from Lord Melbourne. He entered Parliament in 1774, but attracted little notice. How? ever, after the lapse of a couple of years, he began to attack indiscrim? inately any Member of the Government or of the House whom he suspected of double dealing, injustice, or insincerity. Although patron? ised by Burke and Fox, yet he attached himself to no party; so that people were accustomed to say that " there were three parties in the country whilst he had a seat in Parliament, viz. the Ministry, the Opposition, and Lord George Gordon." The American War met with his violent opposition, for " he uniformly deprecated a system of blood, and compared his Majesty's Council to ' plague, pestilence, and starva? tion'" (Robert Watson, Life of Lord George Gordon, 1795, p. 9.) The war not being pursued with the success anticipated, the Government intimated to the leaders of the Catholics that they w7ere prepared to pass "An Act for relieving his Majesty's Subjects professing the Popish Religion, from certain Penalties and Disabilities imposed on them by an Act, made in the Eleventh and Twelfth years of the Reign of King William the Third, entitled * An Act for the further Preventing the Growth of Popery,'" provided that their co-religionists would enter the army and navy to enable the Government to prosecute the war to a successful issue. The suggestion was enthusiastically accepted, and the Bill for the repeal passed the House without a single dissentient. Never? theless the measure greatly alarmed many people, and in anticipation of a like indulgence being granted to the Scotch Catholics, riots raged in Edinburgh and Glasgow. Protestant societies sprang up in various parts of the country, and Lord George Gordon, who was at the head of the malcontents in Scotland, was invited (December 1779) to become President of the United Protestant League. In Parliament he strongly urged the repeal of the Act. He inter? viewed the King and called upon him to use his influence with the</page><page sequence="4">224 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. Cabinet, and warned him that in Scotland he was suspected of being a Papist, and that Roman Catholicism had banished the Stuart dynasty from the throne. Further audiences with the King and his Ministers proved, however, fruitless. The Protestant Association thereupon resolved to present from all parts of the country a petition to Parliament for the repeal of the Act, and an advertisement ran as follows: " Those of London and its environs who wish the Repeal of the late Popish Bill are desired to sign the Protestant Petition, which they may have access to at the President's House in Welbeck-Street, every day before four o'clock." (William Vincent, Narrative of the late Riots and Disturbances . . . with an account of the commitment of Lord George Gordon to the Tower, 1780, p. 13.) Before presenting the petition it was decided to hold a mass meeting on Friday, June 2, 1780, at 10 o'clock in the morning, in St. George's Fields, Southwark. The numbers who attended are variously estimated from forty to sixty thousand; many wearing blue cockades, and vociferating " No Popery ! " This remarkable sight was witnessed by a Jew named Nathan Henry, outside whose house in the Fields the meeting had been con? vened. ''How the gulf of time is bridged over may be deduced from the fact that he was the great-grandfather of the Rev. Morris Joseph, the senior minister of the Berkeley Street congregation. He it was who opened in Old Market Street the first synagogue on the Surrey side of the river. Previously Minyan had been held in the King's Bench prison, as it was frequently necessary to include any Jews who were incarcerated for debt, to complete the required number obligatory for public service." {Jewish Chronicle, Oct. 13, 1905.) This immense concourse marched in four divisions to Parliament and filled the Lobbies. The crowTd was roused to a pitch of great excitement by Lord George Gordon appearing at the top of the gallery stairs and reporting that the petition was likely to meet with failure. Having presented the petition, Gordon moved to have it taken into immediate consideration. After some debate the House voted that the matter be adjourned until the sixth. Exasperated by this result the people became noisy and insulting, ill-feeling manifested itself in wanton destruction, and several Roman Catholic chapels were destroyed that very night. On the 6th of June, when the petition was to be con</page><page sequence="5">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 225 sidered, a violent crowd gathered round the Houses of Parliament. The Commons adjourned after passing some resolutions against the mob. The result was that the rioters proceeded from excess to excess; and in the evening they congregated outside Newgate, demanding the release of the prisoners. This was refused by the governor. The prison was attacked, set on fire, and three hundred malefactors released. The next day, the 7th, the King's Bench prison and the New Bridewell were destroyed and the prisoners released. The mob, recruited now by about 2000 criminals, were eager for plunder and riot. Langdale's distillery on Holborn Hill, opposite Leather Lane, now occupied by Buchanan's, the Scotch whisky distillers, was attacked and destroyed, resulting in frightful drink orgies. Men, women, and children were at one time seen on their knees, drinking the ardent spirit as it flowed down the kennel of the street in Holborn. The Bank of England was threatened; and on the 8th, twenty thousand troops were mustered and the riots quelled. Three hundred of the mob were killed, 192 convicted, and 25 executed. Among those upon whom the death penalty was inflicted (July 20th) was a Jew named Samuel Solomons, residing at Mr. Connor's. (Westminster Magazine, July 1780, p. 373.) An eye-witness of these executions, a correspondent signing himself J. N. in Notes and Queries (2nd series, vi. 143), September 25, 1858, writes : " One was said to be a Jew, and a little incident respecting this man has dwelt upon my memory. His next door neighbour on one side was crying out loudly from fear and the Jew nudged him, as a hint to show more fortitude, and he became silent." Mrs. Samuel Yates (nee Martha Abrahams, born February 1757, died 1840) was in her old age fond of relating to the late Professor D. W. Marks how she was stopped in the streets of London by the Gordon rioters in June 1780. She had travelled up from Dorsetshire to buy her trousseau for her approaching wedding, which took place on April 25, 1781. Her father, Moses Abrahams of Poole, took to wife a farmer's daughter named Martha Haynes, who embraced Judaism on her marriage. Sir Stuart M. Samuel, Bart., and his brother, the Postmaster-General, are among the notable descendants of this remarkable union. (The History and Genealogy of the Jewish Families of Yates and Samuel of Liverpool, edited by Lucien Wolf (London, 1901), p. 12.) Even after the disturbances had been quelled, so alarmed were the VOL. VII. P</page><page sequence="6">226 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. peaceable elements of the population, that " not only were their doors all scrawled with chalk, intimating that they were no Papists, and their windows decorated with blue flags or ribands, but the very Jews in Houndsditch and Duke's Place were so terrified that they followed the general example, and unintentionally gave an air of ridicule to what they understood in a very serious light by writing on their shutters, ' This house is a true Protestant.'" (William Vincent, p. 37.) Grimaldi the clown, an Italian who had just arrived in England, had written above his doorway in exquisite irony, "No religion." (Chambers's Booh of Days, vol. i. p. 747, footnote.) Mrs. Thrale, in a letter to Dr. Johnson, writes: ". . . and wdien the Papists are all burned, and the Protestants all hanged for burning them, the Jews may jump for joy. I think no one else can be pleased." {Letters to and from the late Samuel Johnson, LL.D., by Hester Lynch Piozzi, 1787, vol. ii. p. 149?Letter ccxli.: Mrs. Thrale to Dr. Johnson, Bath, 3 o'clock on Saturday morning, June 10, 1780.) Richard Lovell Edgeworth, in his remarks, " To the reader," Edge worth's Town, May 31, 1817, which prefaces Harrington, a tale, and Ormond, a tale, by his daughter Maria Edgeworth, says: "The first of these tales, Harrington, was occasioned by an extremely well-written letter which Miss Edgeworth received from America, from a Jewess, com? plaining of the illiberality with which the Jewish nation had been treated in some of Miss Edge worth's works." To make amends, the authoress in this instance presents Jewish characters that are extremely flattering, and unctuous to a degree. Chapter xv. describes the state of London in the hands of the Gordon rioters, and tells how two ladies of title suspected of being Papists escaped the fury of the mob by taking refuge in the house of Montenero, a Jew who had fled from Spain to America: "... suddenly a cry was raised against the Jews: unfortunately Jews rhymed to shoes; these words were hitched into a rhyme and the cry was, 'No Jews, no wooden shoes.' Thus, without any natural, civil, religious, moral, or political connection, the poor Jews came in remainder to the antient antigallican antipathy felt by English feet and English fancies against the French wooden shoes." The Wandering Jew, The Jews' Naturalisation Bill of 1753, Moses Mendelssohn, Macklin's Shylock, all form subjects of the early chapters of this tale.</page><page sequence="7">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 227 The fourth is almost entirely devoted to an appreciation of Israel Lyons (1739-75), who had given "Harrington" an introduction to Montenero, whose daughter the hero subsequently marries. Israel Lyons was a botanist and mathematician, and in 1773 accompanied Captain C. J. Phipps, afterwards the second Lord Mulgrave (1744-92), as astronomer, in his attempt to discover a northern route to India by sea. It is interesting to note that on this expedition, Nelson, who was then a midshipman, formed one of the crew. Israel Lyons was a native of Cambridge, where his father, Israel Lyons, senior, a Polish Jew (died 1770), was Teacher of the Hebrew Tongue in the University of that town, and was the author of the first Hebrew grammar by a Jew in the English language, which was published in 1735 at Cambridge.1 Gordon was arrested on the charge of high treason, and committed on the 9th of June to the Tower, where he was rigidly guarded for eight months. He was tried for his life on February 5, 1781, at the Court of King's Bench, where his firm deportment and striking dress of black velvet aroused much comment. His wTit was as keen as ever. He objected to a ropemaker being empanelled as a juryman, as he wrould be " too interested by profession"; and once when Lord Mansfield was summing up with bias, he rebuked him. There was no proof that he had approved the riots. (Howell's State Trials, 1814, vol. xxi. pp. 485-687.) " He was acquitted, to the general satisfaction of his suppporters, and of many who were not his supporters. If public thanksgiving were returned in several churches for his acquittal, one grave manly voice was uplifted to swell the approval. Dr. Johnson declared that he was far better pleased that Lord George Gordon should escape punishment than that a precedent should be established for hanging a man for construc? tive treason." (M'Carthy's History of the Four Georges, 1901, vol. iii. p. 289.) A few impressions of his character and appearance at this time, as given by his contemporaries and modern writers, will not come amiss here. 1 Of. H. P. Stokes, Studies in Anglo-Jewish History, 1913, pp. 224-226.</page><page sequence="8">228 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. William Vincent (a pseudonym of Thomas Holcroft the playwright) says that, in his earlier Parliamentary days, " Gordon had the air of a Puritan, a figure tall and meagre, hair straight, and dress plain. He was sweet-natured and never satirical." The Dublin Revieiv (vol. xx., new series, January-April 1873, p. 391) limns him thus: "Of a prim, formal, and meagre figure clad in sombre garments, his long hair falling lank upon his shoulders, his restless eye glaring with triumphant spiritual pride, with a harsh loud voice and much vehement ungainly gesture, he seemed the very personification of a Puritan leader of the time of Claver house." Burke described Lord George Gordon as a Don Quixote ; Horace Walpole called him "The Lunatic Apostle," and he also speaks of his "loose morals"; whilst Hannah More calls him "very debauched." (The Month, 1893, vol. lxxviii. p. 63.) This latter aspersion on his moral character may not be entirely unmerited, for in the Town and Country Magazine, June 1786, are two engraved portraits : one of Gordon, in which he figures as "Lord Crop," and one of a lady as " The Meretricious Fair " (London : Published by A. Hamilton, junior, Fleet Street, July 1, 1786). This is accom? panied by an explanatory letterpress. Lionel Johnson, the writer of "The Gordon Riots" in The Month (vol. lxxviii., May 1893, p. 63), a Catholic magazine and review, thus describes him: " He was very tall, very thin, very sallow, wTith very high cheekbones, and very long, lank red hair. He wore spectacles, trousers of red tartan plaid, with a coat of black velvet." ?Here is Dickens' conception of this strange man : ". . . was about middle height, of a slender make, and sallow complexion, with an aquiline nose, and long hair of a reddish brown, combed perfectly straight and smooth about his ears, and slightly powdered, but without the faintest vestige of a curl. ... it was striking to observe his very bright large eye, which betrayed a restlessness of thought and purpose, singularly at variance with the studied composure and sobriety of his mien, and with his quaint and sad apparel. It had nothing harsh or cruel in its expres? sion ; neither had his face, which was thin and mild, and wore an air of melancholy; but it was suggestive of an air of indefinable uneasiness, which infected those who looked upon him, and filled them with a kind of pity for the man: though why it did so, they would have had some trouble to explain." (Barnaby Budge, chap, xxxv.)</page><page sequence="9">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 229 His popularity after the trial did not wane, for on September 5th of the same year he was nominated as a candidate for the City of London; but, wishing to exercise his energy in directions other than parliamentary, he declined to contest the election. In the latter end of 1782, Lord George visited Paris, where he was received by Queen Marie Antoinette and introduced into all the fashion? able circles. He returned to England greatly impressed by the evil and viciousness he had seen there, and now bent all his activities to the over? throw of Jesuitical influence, which he considered to be the bane of France and other countries. He intrigued with the Dutch ambassador here against the influence of the Emperor Joseph of Austria. On November 8, 1784, he w^rote, as President of the Protestant Association, to Count van Lynden, the new Dutch ambassador, offering his services to the States of Holland against all their Popish enemies ; and on the 1 Oth he visited him in Dutch uniform, bearing a Highland broadsword which he laid at his feet. The following August he sent this address to the Emperor Joseph : Copy of a letter from the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon, President of the Protestant Association, to Joseph Benedict Augustus, Emperor of Germany and King of the Romans. " Sir,?If you had paid due attention to the remarks I made on your ordinance against the Jews on the 14th of March 1782, and reversed that ordinance accordingly, you and your subjects would not have been in such a state of distraction and plague as at this hour. I observed much meekness and forbearance towards you, from that period till the 18th of September 1783 [notwithstanding your Hereditary Arch-Treasurer's domestics at the Court of London loaded me continually with reproaches, insults, and injuries, because I loved the Jews], A year and a half was sunicient time for a man of your character, as to abilities and discernment, to make yourself master of the consequences of those remarks. I then had the honour to address three different letters to Elias Lindo, Esq.; and the Spanish and Portugueze, and Nathan Salomon, Esq.; and the German and Dutch Jews, requesting those rulers to submit my best intended endeavours to the consideration of Judah and the tribes of Israel, whithersoever dis? persed over the whole world. In a very few days after, Providence, without any expence, brought two Greek gentlemen to my service, between whom and me an Italian friend negociated ; and they, at that time in Turkish habits, took solemn and kind charge of two large packets of politics, under</page><page sequence="10">230 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM, my hand and seal, directed to Achmet IV, Grand Signor, the present wise Sultan on the throne of Turkey, who was recommended to me by a Scots chieftain. The Greeks undertook to deliver my letters into the Sultan's own hands. These letters contained my sentiments and advice concerning the governments and characters of the leading men in Europe and America, and stirring up Constantinople, Egypt, and all Judea, against the Spanish and Portuguese inquisitions, and the Italian religion, and against your tyrannical aggressions in Holland, and against the Empress of Russia's uncivilised depredations in Turkey.?Yesterday I had the honour to com? municate these circumstances to Monsieur de Lyden, envoye extraordinaire de leurs Hautes Puissances, at the Dutch Hotel in Hereford Street; and to press his Excellency, in the most endearing expressions that occurred to me, to take especial care that as advantageous terms of peace with Amsterdam shall be obtained from you as Algiers has accepted from the king of Spain. I am indeed truly sorry I can say nothing more agreeable and comfortable to you at present; but if you will turn to me, I will turn to you. I am under vows to the Protestant Association, who chose me for their president; and am indispensably bound to be honest to them ; and no human power can dissolve the obligation. If it is true what we hear of you, that you are afraid of being poisoned by the Italian Priests in your own house, fly to the hotel of Comte Wassenaar and Baron Van Leiden, the Dutch deputies, and lodge with them ; and you will be as safe and happy as Rahab was with Joshua's spies in Jericho. I find the Dutch ambassador here a very good sort of man; and I may almost dare venture to assure your Imperial Highness, that the Republic has also sent agreeable and right-hearted men to Vienna, to lead your Majesty into the ways of peace. Praying that the living God, the King of the Jews, may open your eyes to see the present truth, I am, Sir, with due estima? tion, Your sincere friend, And humble servant, G. Gordon. Welbeck Street, London, Aug. 10, 1785." 1 He now sent memorials to the Governments of every Protestant country, and to all the important statesmen of Europe, calling upon them, in the name of the Protestant Association, to resist to their utmost the advances made by Roman Catholicism. It is said that shortly after this an attempt was made to compass his death by means of poison, which was contained in a bottle of medicine bearing the forged signature of Gordon's doctor. (Watson's Life of Gordon, p. 56.) 1 I cannot trace the magazine from which this cutting is taken.</page><page sequence="11">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 231 He also came to loggerheads with the Established Church. He had been friendly with a dissenting minister, a Mr. Wilson, who had died without leaving a will. He attended his last days, so that his evidence was required before the Ecclesiastical Court at Canterbury. Partly from his conscientious nonconformity, and partly from political reasons, he refused to appear. The Archbishop of Canterbury suggested an inter? view, to which Gordon would not agree. He was accordingly solemnly excommunicated at the parish church of St. Mary le Bonne, on May 4, 1786, and was threatened with a "WTrit de Excommunicato Capiendo"; indeed notice to this effect w*as served upon him from Doctors' Commons on the 22nd of November of the same year. (Gentleman's Magazine, 1786, p. 993.) When he heard of his excommunication, he laughed and said, " To expel me from a society to which I never belonged is an absurdity worthy of an Archbishop." He was evidently, even at this period of his life, a man of some political importance and influence; although, all unconscious of the future, he had but a few more months of freedom to enjoy. In the Public Advertiser of August 28, 1786, the following notice appears : "His Excellency Le Comte de Peviczy, Ambassador from the Emperor of Germany, did Lord George Gordon the honour to wait upon him on Friday in Welbeck-Street. "The same day his Excellency Monsieur D'Ageno, the Ambassador from Genoa, waited upon his Lordship. On Saturday his Excellency the Comte Soderini, the Venetian Ambassador, was pleased to wait upon Lord George Gordon in Welbeck-Street. "It seems that Lord George Gordon has great influence with the Courts of Constantinople, Tripoli, Algiers, Tunis, and the United Provinces of Holland, with whom the State of Venice is desirous of obtaining peace and confirming friendship. "Lord George Gordon, after waiting upon the Ambassadors, went into the City to Sir Charles Raymond, Mr. Thellusson, and Mr. Salomon. . . ." The beginning of his downfall was due to his championing another strange character, Joseph Balsamo (1745-94), more commnoly known as Cagliostro the magician. It seems that Gordon w7as always attracted towards the bizarre. Cagliostro had just been released from the Bastille, where he had been imprisoned by Marie Antoinette for his alleged</page><page sequence="12">232 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. complicity in the affair of the diamond necklace. His property was retained, although he had been declared innocent; he was allowed his freedom, but banished the country. He came to England where he met Gordon, who took a great liking to him. A short time after his arrival, the French representative, Monsieur Barthelemy, sent him an intimation that he was at liberty now to return to France, and requested an interview. Cagliostro, accompanied by Gordon, drove to the Hotel of France in Piccadilly, but declined to have any communications with the French representative except in the presence of Gordon. However, a letter was read to him from M?ns, de Breteuil, an instrument of the Queen's faction, with reference to his return, but he evidently regarded this with suspicion, and did not avail himself of its offer. (Public Advertiser, August 22, 24, 28, 1886.) He remained in England about two years, and then crossed to the Continent, passed quickly through some of the principal cities, and finally settled in Rome with his wife. After a few weeks of repose he was arrested by the Inquisition, and condemned to death on the charge of being a Freemason. The death penalty wTas afterwrards withdrawn, and on December 17, 1789, he was thrown into the prison-castle of St. Angelo, where he died towards the end of 1794, about a year after Gordon's similar death. It was common belief in France that he had been secretly strangled. To return to Gordon. On Tuesday, January 23, 1787, he was again called into King's Bench, on an information for having written and pub? lished a pamphlet entitled The Prisoners' Petition to the Right Hon. Lord George Gordon, to preserve their lives and liberties, and prevent their banishment to Botany Bay (London : Printed by Thomas Wilkins, No. 23 Aldermanbury, 1786). This pamphlet was characterised as a libel on the Judges and the administration of the law. He was also indicted for a libel on the moral and political conduct of the Queen of France, that appeared in the Public Advertiser, August 24, 1786. The trials were not heard until the 6th of June following. Cunningham, in his Lives of Eminent Englishmen, vol. vi. p. 377, in reference to " The Prisoners' Petition," writes : " This strange perform? ance appeared to be a farrago of vague reasoning and absurd reference, interlarded with a great number of scripture phrases." The passage</page><page sequence="13">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 233 quoted in the information was to the following purpose : " At a time when the nations of the earth endeavour wholly to follow the laws of God, it is no wronder that we, labouring under our severe sentences, should cry out from our dungeons and ask redress. Some of us are about to suffer execution without righteousness, and others to be sent off to a barbarous country. The records of justice have been falsified, and the laws profanely altered by men like ourselves. The bloody law against us has been enforced under a nominal administration, by mere whitened walls, men who possess only the show of justice, and who have condemned us to death contrary to law7, etc. &amp;c." Gordon's defence, however, was bold and manly; he declared that the Botany-Bay petition wras written with a view to call the attention of the people to the rigour of our penal laws. After an extremely short interval he was declared " Guilty." The second libel charge was not heard until the 13th. The Attorney-General opened the case with a long exordium on the virtues of the " most high, mighty, and puissant Maria Antoinette, a great and illustrous princess, eminently distinguished and renowned for her wisdom, prudence, justice, clemency, chastity, and every other regal virtue." To this rhapsody of technical nonsense, Lord George replied with a smile that "Everybody knew that the Queen of France was a very convenient lady" (Watson, p. 81). A verdict of "Guilty" was also returned in this instance. Lord George bowed respectfully and asked if he might know the sentence in each case, but this was withheld. The same day he waited on the Attorney General, and in a very polite manner asked "If he wrould do him a favour." The Attorney-General as politely answered in the affirmative, " If it was in his power." Lord George then said, " He wished to be indulged for three or four days to settle his affairs." The answer was, " It was not in his power." " Then," said Lord George, " you would have me appear to-morrow?" "Most certainly." (Gentleman's Magazine, vol. lvii. p. 634.) Nevertheless on June 23rd a messenger from Holland brought word that Lord George Gordon had landed at Helvoet (Gentleman's Magazine, vol. lvii. (1), p. 545). He then fled to Amsterdam, the reason given in Knight's History of England being that that city abounded wdth Jews (vol. ii., note on p. 218). And, I would suggest, with the object also of becoming a member of their faith. No charge or accusation of any</page><page sequence="14">234 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. kind was exhibited against him, but at the instigation of the Marquis of Verac, the French Ambassador, the Burgomaster of Amsterdam ordered the Sheriff to communicate with Gordon at his lodging in the house of Moses op den Berg (who was probably a Jew), requesting him to leave the city. (Public Advertiser, July 26, 1787.) He returned to England, arriving at Harwich with a file of Dutch guards on July 22, 1787. Here is an extract from the Morning Herald of July 27th: "Lord George Gordon is arrived in town from Holland, and is said to be going down to his brother's seat in Scotland, where he will remain till November next. Lord George Gordon says he is returned to England, in obedience to the commands of the States General, rather than involve his own country in the horrors of a general war !" However, he really retired to Birmingham, where he lived in the utmost secrecy and became, of all things, a Jew. So guarded was his identity from the outside public, whilst in that city, that it is only with the utmost difficulty that the details of his life during his four months there have been discovered. He had not suddenly adopted his new religion, but had been tending in that direction for some years past, and it is a moot point when he actually changed his faith. In Barnaby Budge, Charles Dickens has used his prophetic vision after the event; and has given us a very interesting, but by no means historical passage, showing how Gordon's mind had conceived the idea of Judaising as early as 1780, during the riots. In chapter xxxvii. Gordon is described as being awakened from a sound sleep by Gashford : '" To say the truth, I have slept so soundly," said Lord George, rubbing his eyes and looking round the room, " that I don't remember quite?what place is this % " " My lord ! " cried Gashford with a smile. " Oh ! " returned his superior. " Yes. You're not a JewT, then ? " " A Jew ! " exclaimed the pious secretary, recoiling. " I dreamed that we were Jews, Gashford. You and I?both of us ?Jews with long beards." . . . " Dreamed he was a Jew," he (Gashford) said thoughtfully as he closed the bedroom door. " He may come to that before he dies. It's like enough. Well! After a time, and provided I lost nothing by it, I don't see why that religion shouldn't suit me as well as any</page><page sequence="15">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 235 other. There are rich men among the Jews; shaving is very trouble? some;?yes, it would suit me well enough. For the present, though, we must be Christian to the core."' In the letter which he wrote to the Emperor Joseph of Austria in 1785, Gordon mentions that he had the honour to address three different letters to Elias Lindo, esq., and the Spanish and Portugueze Jews, and to Nathan Salomon, esq., and the German and Dutch Jew^s.1 One of these letters, a printed folio broadside in double column dated 1783, is preserved in the British Museum (1880, C.I. 150), a transcription of which follows. From its contents, Gordon's interest and his attraction to the Jewish people is indeed remarkable. The Hebrew quotations also prove that at this early date he was not a stranger to the holy tongue. Copy of a Letter from the Right Honourable Lord George Gordon to Elias Lindo, Esq., and the Portuguese, and Nathan Salomon, Esq., and the German Jews. Gentlemen,?The eyes of all Israel are upon you. America is in confusion. No wise man wonders at it. There is no prospect of a Peace. The Peace wTas ratified. The Definitive Treaty was ratified. The Preliminary Articles were ratified. The Provisional Articles were ratified. The whole Negotiation was ratified. The Commercial Regulations were ratified. The Negotiators themselves are ?*atified. Shemah Israel! All Europe is in confusion. And this confusion is owing, in God's providence, to the ratified Negotiators. Particularly to the inconsiderate conduct of Richard Oswald, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, John Jay, and Henry Laurens, in agree? ing to, and signing such Provisional Articles for Peace, with England, as they sealed at Paris, the 30th of last November. Shemah Koli! I knew very well that the scheme, devised for Peace, was ratified from the be 1 Elias Lindo (died 1785) was Parnass of the Bevis Synagogue, 5544 (1783-4). Among his descendants may be numbered Coningsby Disraeli, Sir Vincent Caillard, expert on Egyptian finance, Alfred Fernandez Yarrow, the shipbuilder and philanthropist, and Moses Albert Norsa Lindo, the President of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews' Board of Guardians. Nathan Salomon was the E&gt;fcO = Lay Head of the New Synagogue {Jewish Chronicle, June 26, 1874, p. 203), and became a partner of Abraham Goldsmid after the death of his brother, Benjamin Goldsmid. He married, as her second husband, Esther, his partner's sister and widow of Elias Joachim. She was the maternal grandmother, by her first marriage, of Henry Edward Goldsmid, the paternal grandfather of Gladys, Lady Swaythling.</page><page sequence="16">236 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. ginning; and would not do, in this enlightened reign, in any quarter of the world. I knew this before Richard Oswald set out from Philpot-Lane. I published my sentiments against the Peace, in duty to my fellow citizens, in the Public Advertiser, with my name to them, the day after Lord Grantham's letter made its appearance. Believe me, Israel! I am your friend. Don't credit a word the King's present servants say to you. In the affairs of this world, men are saved, not by faith, but by the want of it. The King's servants are deceivers ; themselves being deceived. Those who became converts and creditors to this Coalition Ministry were at first a necessitous and ignorant sect, out of all nations and languages. Their creditors, I hear, are now becoming a superstitious sect, great observers of set days and times. Don't you support superstitious sects. Give no more of the childrens bread unto the dogs, neither cast ye your gold and pearls before swine, lest they destroy and consume thine inheritance, and turn again, and rend you. The prodigal son was reduced to feed swine ; and filled his own belly with husks. The tribes of Israel will soon be driven out of this pleasant land, like chaff before the wind, if they set themselves against God, and His People, to serve Idolaters. There is no time to be lost. The Protestants in Europe, as well as in America, will insist with vigour on your shewing yourselves on their side, against the Jesuits. The Philistines are upon us ! The Jews have served the Gods of the Philistines before now. Promise and vow to do no more so. You shall find rest to your souls. Do you know what God says upon the subject? I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jeivs, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. Don't countenance the synagogues of Satan. Keep close to the English, and Scots Protestants, and our choice friends in Holland, and America; and take a side with the Grand Signor against Russia, if she presumes to carry on a war for the re-establishment of the Jesuits.? Jezebel was destroyed for seeking the possession of Naboth's vineyard. With respect to the domestic peace for England and America, there is one thing to be observed, and remedied. The leading men there are the wise men, who dwell in the hearts of the people. They put no confidence in our present Administration. They therefore, carry on the secret, as it were, of regulating Europe and America by private communications of true information. The remedy is easy. European Kings must destroy their Idols, and search the word of God, and pray for his secret presence and favour; which will make their hands strong to do good. As an example of this mode of carrying on the work of reformation by individuals, of the same mind, it may be useful to state to the public, that long before our King sent Richard Oswald, to the King of France, to conjure up a Peace, the President of the Congress in America (after the affair of Sara? toga) sent a letter to me, in his own handwriting, upon the unhappy subject, that now bars the Peace between England and America, The particulars of that letter were not meet to be laid before the Congress at</page><page sequence="17">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 237 that critical moment for American Protestants. There was a little Popish leaven, even at that early period, working under their High Mightinesses' red night caps. The pointing out of this evil, which the wise men had detected, was judiciously delayed till a more powerful opportunity. By cautious degrees the rest of the men of Issachar, who had the true dis? cernments of their senses, were warned of this danger, and began to smell the old rat in their Congress. They watched their enemy from the watch towers of Jerusalem. They waited patiently, without murmuring, for the long blast with the Rams Horns. All the different tribes, and states of America, now begin to smell the rat in the Congress?a Popish Congress. The Army, the valiant of Israel, have hunted them from the brotherly dwellings of Philadelphia, to the confines of Prince Town; where Dr. Wither spoon will give them no quarter till they behave better. George Washing? ton's Coalition letter is not worth the fourth part of a Shekel of silver to the Pope, or the Congress, or the King of France, or to our Babel Cabinet at St. James's. General Washington's letter is infected with the same leaven of uncleanliness as General Arnold's address was; though in a different degree. If France and England should insist on, and endeavour to push, and cram their ratified Provisional Articles, of Peace with England, down the throats of the reclaiming and independant States, a la mode de Paris; General Washington and Congress, may be served up and dressed again like the King's tea men, a la mode de Boston. A Vagrant Congress. Tar and Feathers. They suck the Sow of Corruption. They return to wallow in the mire. Ratification! Abomination. A mockery of all authority. Their name will not raise the monies at Amsterdam, or Glas? gow. Wise men won't take their security. They have no rest, or dwelling place, in the habitation made without hands, in the hearts of the true Israel. The present Congress seem predestinated to run violently down hill. They may, indeed, herd together another year, and browse upon thistles, in Nova-Scotia; the next year they may do pennance, perhaps, at St. Petersburg, in Russia; and a third year, they may very possibly sit like German Princes, in Osnabrigs and Ashes, at the Electorate Court in Hanover. They that fed the swine fled. There is no rest for the wicked. The sceptre of their government is not the Shebet of righteousness. Jehovah Jireh!?I have the honour to be, Gentlemen, your most obedient and humble servant, G. Gordon. Welbeck Street, London, August 26, 1783. London : Printed and sold by R. Denham, No. 20 Salisbury Court, Fleet Street; and by G. Bremner, Bookseller, No 127, in the Strand. (Price One Penny).</page><page sequence="18">238 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. He also wrote a variety of papers upon finance, and distributed them amongst the Jews in England and Holland . . . "he knew that as long as Ministers could borrow with facility, the war system would never cease " (Watson, p. 75). Similar theories have been promulgated in our times. It has been said that the great Jewish financial houses, by with? holding their support, could make war impossible, and could also secure the welfare of their co-religionists by refusing loans to such countries where anti-Semitism is rife. An article in Temple Bar, by Millicent Erskine Wemyss (March 1887, vol. lxxix. p. 367), dates his conversion about 1786, but this is probably incorrect, from the following evidence. A letter dated August 7, 1786, was sent to Gordon from the heads of the Protestant Association, in which it was suggested that the date of choosing the new office-bearers should be fixed for Gordon's birthday?Christmas Day, December 25th (sic). The letter show7s him such deference as would not be tendered if there were a suspicion that his religious beliefs had changed. Charles Dickens gives the date as August 1788 (Barnaby Budge, chap, lxxxii.), but this is again incorrect, as on his arrest in 1787 he was already a professed Jew, rigid in the observance of the ritual of his adopted faith. Moses Margoliouth, a convert to Christianity, in his History of the Jews in Great Britain, 1851, vol. ii. pp. 122-4, quotes a Hebrew letter by one Meyer Joseph,1 which states that Lord, George Gordon went to Paris, where he was received by Marie Antoinette, and that this visit took place after his initiation into the Abrahamic covenant. His stay in Paris, we know, occurred in the latter end of 1782 (Watson, p. 36). According to a writer in the Jewish Chronicle, April 25, 1890, p. 5, "Gordon received the customary tuition of a proselyte from Aaron Barnett, )rn of the Hambro Synagogue."2 It was at this Synagogue 1 The Meyer Joseph referred to was born at K?nigsberg, Prussia, October 8, 1763, and came to London at the age of eighteen. To his intimates he was known as Myer der K?ngisberger. He was the Hebrew stylist and poet-laureate of the community, and under the name of Michael Josephs published in 1834 an English and Hebrew lexicon. He died in London, February 9, 1849. As a young man, he visited Gordon, and acted as his preceptor in Judaism. (Margo liouth, vol. ii. p. 124.) 2 He was the grandfather of John Barnett (1802-90), the composer of the " Mountain Sylph," who was taught instrumental music by Mr. Moss, choirmaster of the New Synagogue. An elder brother succeeded his grandfather as pn at the Hambro Synagogue.</page><page sequence="19">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 239 that Lord George Gordon was called to the Law, and honoured with a 7"D^ VD, i.e. Benediction, when he offered &lt;?100 to the Synagogue. (Margoliouth, vol. ii. p. 123.) The catalogue of the Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition, 1887, contains this item : No. 601, "Minute book of the Hambro Synagogue, containing entry relating to Lord George Gordon." Unfortunately the cataloguer has given no date. When this interesting and, one might say historic visit to the Synagogue occurred, it is very difficult to say. Meyer Joseph's letter states it took place after his initiation in Birmingham (Margoliouth, vol. ii. p. 122), and before his visit to Paris in 1782. This is however not borne out by contemporary magazines, newspapers, and caricature prints, who all fix 1787 as the date of his conversion. In this event his visit to the Hambro Synagogue must have been of a hurried and surreptitious nature. A warrant was at this time out for his apprehension, but with his long beard and Jewish mode of dress he apparently evaded capture and returned to Birmingham. I have been unable to consult the original minute book of the Hambro Synagogue, as unfortunately it has disappeared. On the closing of the Old Hambro Synagogue in Church Passage, Fenchurch Street, 1892-3, the books were deposited in the damp cellars of the Central Synagogue, where a large number utterly perished. I have searched for this entry in the remaining volumes, but without success.1 A correspondent in the Jewish Chronicle, July 3, 1896, p. 9, in a letter headed " Sarah Lyon," gives the following interesting story. Lord George Gordon once passed through Ipswich, when he saw inscribed over the door of a house a quotation from the Haggadah " ^3JJ }*S;n b$ " ?"Let all who are hungry enter and eat." It was the house of Isaac Titterman, the local )tn bnD BIW, &amp;c. The strange inscription attracted Gordon, and thereby began a friendship between them. When Gordon was imprisoned, the Bev. Isaac Titterman and his daughter 1 It is also not unlikely that this particular volume was lent to the late Professor David Kauffmann for the preparation of his paper, Rabbi ZeviAshkenazi and his Family in London, which appeared in Vol. III. of our Transactions. Owing to his premature death, which was deeply deplored by the whole Jewish world of letters, the minute-book was not returned, and may still be in the possession of his executors.</page><page sequence="20">240 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. travelled several times from Ipswich to visit the prisoner and com? fort him.1 Many reasons have been suggested for Gordon's conversion. Robert Watson, who may be termed Gordon's Boswell, a staunch friend and sympathetic companion of his last years, notwithstanding his gloss? ing over many of his failings, writes: " Lord George, who wras constitu? tionally religious, had acquired a serious, contemplative turn of thinking. . . . He had long entertained serious doubts concerning the truths of Christianity, and observed ' that its professors were both at variance with revelation and reason; w7hilst the Jews literally adhered to the laws of Moses.' " (Watson, pp. 76-7.) Watson further suggests that " his conversion may have been due to his disappointments in life, which had soured his temper, and men in this state of mind from sympathy generally love to associate with victims of persecution. Perhaps he hoped to give celebrity to his favourite scheme of finance by embracing Judaism; perhaps he expected to have led back the Israelites to their fathers' land, for I have heard him frequently repeat the following prophecy: Behold the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous branch, and they shall no more say, the Lord liveth, which brought up, the children of Israel out of the Land of Egypt; but the Lord liveth, which brought up, and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the North Country, and from all countries whither I had driven them ; and they shall dwell in their own land. Perhaps his conviction arose from internal evidence; or perhaps he chose rather to be considered as the leader of the Jetcs than the humble disciple of Christ. But whether one or all of these motives had any influence upon his 1 Titterman was a native of Holland, and was brought over to this country by his mother, Sarah Lyon, when nine months old. Sarah Lyon was born in 1703, and died at Ipswich in 1808. Constable painted her portrait when she was 101 years old. A miniature was done of her by T. Lethbridge at the age of 104 ; this was engraved by R. Roe, and published by W. H. Smith, Cambridge, September 4, 1822. At the age of 105 her portrait was again engraved by J. Kinnerley from a miniature by W. S. Lethbridge, and published by W. S. Lethbridge, July 15, 1808, at 96 Strand, London. Another portrait of her at the age of 105 is supposed to exist in Dublin, but whether this is an oil-painting or an engraving I cannot say. Constable also painted the portrait of her son Isaac in his old age. Some of the Ansell family and its con? nections are descended from this remarkable centenarian. (Jewish Chronicle, June 19, 1896, p. 21.)</page><page sequence="21">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 241 conduct, I must confess, though I have talked a thousand times with him upon the subject, I was never able to discover." (Watson, pp. 79-80.) Be his reasons what they may, he certainly regarded his contem? plated religion in a very serious light. He had written a letter to Rabbi Tevele Schiff (died 1792) of the Duke's Place Synagogue, praying that he be received into the Jewish fold. The late Chief Rabbi, Dr. Nathan Marcus Adler, who was a great-nephew1 of Rabbi Tevele Schiff, assured his son, the late Chief Rabbi, Dr. Hermann Adler, that he had actually seen the correspondence (Transactions of the Jewish Historical Society of England, vol. iii. p. 13), but unfortunately the whereabout of these documents is at present unknown. Rabbi Tevele declined to comply with his desires. This probably occurred before his trial in 1788. On his conviction he fled to Amsterdam, not, I would suggest, to evade justice, but to be initiated into the Abrahamic Covenant and become a conforming Jew. He reasoned that his imprisonment would probably be of some years duration ; perhaps he had a presentiment that he would never again be a free man. His heart's desire had been refused by the London Rabbi; he therefore fled to that grand old city where to this very day every facility is given to those wishing to enter the Jewish pale. As I have mentioned above, his wishes wTere again thwarted, and he had to leave the city within twenty-four hours. Why Rabbi Tevele declined to receive the noble proselyte is not quite clear. There is a note at the foot of page 275 of the late Haham Benjamin Artom's Sermons, published in 1873, which runs as follows: " When the learned Manasseh Ben Israel applied personally to Oliver Cromwell for the readmission of the Jews into England, the Protector reminded him of the three accusations that were constantly directed against the Jews. 1st, That they employed the blood of a Christian child in the performance of their Passover ceremonies. 2nd, That they impoverished by their usury the country in which they lived. 3rd, Their unremitting efforts to convert their countrymen to Judaism. The eloquent Rabbi easily proved the injustice and futility of the first accusation. He showed that the second grievance might be averted if all trades were freely opened to Jews. He denied the third charge, which 1 Yente, sister of Rabbi Tevele, had married Baer Adler, grandfather of Dr. Nathan Marcus Adler, and Rabbi Tevele had married Baer Adler's sister. VOL. VII. Q</page><page sequence="22">242 LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. is contrary to the views of our religion. But he promised that such things should never occur in England. The Jews wrere readmitted by Act of Parliament, on December 14, 1655, and from this time no Christian has been converted to Judaism in this country. That was, and is still the rule of the Chief Rabbis of England." The late Chief Rabbi, Dr. Hermann Adler, in his inaugural address, " A Survey of Anglo-Jewish History," as President of this Society in 1896, said: 11 had inquired into the origin of this practice, and had come to the conclusion that no valid foundation whatever existed for this abstention. Manasseh Ben Israel in his "Humble Address" had indeed stated that the Jews did not entice any man to profess their law; but he adds forthwith, " They do not reject him altogether if any man of his own free will come to them." ' (Transactions of the Jewish Historical Society of England, vol. iii. p. 13.) It is not at all improbable that Rabbi Tevele was under the impres? sion that in facilitating the conversion of Gordon he would be committing an offence in law. But personally I am disposed to think that the lay heads of the community, in consultation with the learned Rabbi, agreed that it would be a hazardous thing to do. This w7ould-be proselyte had been a thorn in the side of the Government for years, and was the brother of one of the most aristocratic and influential noblemen of the day. The Jew at the latter end of the eighteenth century was still barely tolerated. Wisely did the Heads of the Jews in London decline to accede to Gordon's desire. It was not politic for the community to attract the attention of the Government to itself, or to provoke the enmity of the Gordons. For one of their clan to actually become a Jew would be a blot on the escutcheon of every member of the ducal family.1 As alluded to before, Gordon on his return to England from Amsterdam made his way to Birmingham, and there was initiated by a 1 The Duchess of Richmond, a daughter of Lord George's brother, the fourth Duke of Gordon, was the great-grandmother of the present Duke of Richmond and Gordon, whose son and heir, the Earl of March, can boast of the blue blood of his Sephardi Jewish ancestors. He is a great-great-grandson of Abraham Israel Ricardo, who in 1781 held the office of Parnass in the ancient Synagogue in Bevis Marks the very year that Lord George was tried for high treason for inciting the riots.</page><page sequence="23">(l&lt;d iwmJor-niJtlit- *toU, G ^-GcWn. /^?t ^ fAfl?Rg ?ttjoW*^^Wv Appendix No. 12</page><page sequence="24">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 243 Rabbi Jacob into the holy covenant of Abraham (Margoliouth, vol. ii. p. 122), when he was given the name of tanfc^, " Israel," and, as custo? mary with proselytes, W3? DrrQK p, " Son of Abraham our Father." For some four or five months his whereabouts were unknowm, but on Dec. 7, 1787, M'Manus, a celebrated Bow Street runner, discovered his retreat and arrested him. The following extracts from contemporary newspapers will give an account of his apprehension and his life during his stay in Birmingham : Aris's Birmingham Gazette, Monday, Dec. 10, 1787, Birmingham. " On Friday last, by virtue of a Judge's warrant, Lord George Gordon was apprehended in this town for contempt of the Court of King's Bench in not appearing upon the prosecution last Hilary term, for publishing a libel, of which he was found guilty. Lord George was conveyed before Joseph Carles, Esq., who directed him to be conducted by an officer from Bow Street, and the keeper of the prison here . . . " It was in the month of August last that Lord George came to this town, and he has ever since lodged at the house of a Jewess, in Dudley Street, to whom he was unknown when he first arrived. " When the officers waited upon him, he did not deny himself, but told them he was a Jew, and whatever might happen, should continue one ; and when he learnt that it was ordered he should be in London on Saturday evening, he expressed much concern thereat, as it would oblige him to travel on the Sabbath-day of the religion he had embraced. Lord George, we understand, first became a Jew while he was in Holland, and ever since he has resided in this place has been a very strict and rigid observer of every rite, ceremony, and custom of the Jews except that of attending the Syna? gogue, where he feared to appear lest he should be discovered. His beard he has suffered to grow to a considerable length, which, together with his dress, contributed so much to disguise him that he frequently went out in the daytime, though most of his hours were spent in his lodging-room in reading, writing, and learning the Hebrew language." The Morning Chronicle and London Advertiser, Monday, Dec. 10, 1787. No. 5798. Price threepence. " The Printer late yesterday evening received the following extra? ordinary article: " On Friday last, between one and two o'clock, Lord George Gordon was apprehended at a Jew's house in Birmingham for a contempt of the Court of King's Bench in consequence of a libel.</page><page sequence="25">244 LORD GEORGE GORDONS CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. " On Saturday evening he was brought before Mr. Justice Buller, when a warrant was made out, and his Lordship is now lodged in the King's Bench. " His Lordship is said to have embraced the Jewish religion, and to have been circumcised, and undergone all the other ceremonies. "When he was apprehended in Birmingham, fifteen principal Jews attended who all paid him great respect, and called him Moses. " His Lordship was dressed in the Jewish habit, and had a very long beard." Felix Farley's Bristol Journal. Printed by J. Budhall in Small Street; Where advertisements, etc., are taken in, and letterpress and Copperplate Printing neatly executed. Saturday, No. 2042. (Price Threepence.) December 15, 1787. Vol. xxxviii. Lord George Gordon turned, Jeiv. "In consequence of instructions from Mr. Justice Buller, Mr. MacManus, an active officer of Bow Street, proceeded to Birmingham, and on Friday last, between 1 and 2 o'clock in the afternoon, apprehended Lord George Gordon for a contempt of the Court of King's Bench, the Judges of which had found him guilty of being concerned in the publication of a libel. "Lord George Gordon had lived in the town of Birmingham since August last, unknown to every class of men but those of the Jewish religion, among whom he has passed his time in the greatest cordiality and friendship, having renounced the Christian faith, and adhering rigidly to the doctrine of the Hebrew Church. The ceremony of circumcision he is said to have undergone and a total change of habiliments he has suffered, with a degree of conscious complacency and condescension which nothing but a mental conviction could ever effect. " He appears with a beard of an extraordinary length, and the usual raiment of a Jew ; and asserts, that it is a sin for any man to be seen differently. His observance of the culinary preparations is remarkable. He will touch nothing that is served according to the freedom of the Christian religion. "In the first interview between him and MacManus, Lord George conducted himself with the decorum of a gentleman, acknowledged that the officer of justice was not to blame in the discharge of his duty ; but that he knew of no authority by which he was enabled to harass him or any other individual of his religion. He was surrounded by a number of Jews, who</page><page sequence="26">&gt; -? ^i-7* ^^^^^^^^^^^^^ t?^^. MOSE 5 G?RDEN *r?eWANDERIN? Jfi *r. %1t*Jb*$6 fa, w wart m ^l^^-jg^^ Aj&gt;J&gt;endix Nom 13</page><page sequence="27">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 245 affirmed that his Lordship was Moses risen from the dead in order to instruct them and enlighten the whole world. " From every article of information, it appears that his Lordship has officiated in a principal Synagogue in Birmingham, as a Chief of the Levitical Order; and his eloquence and persuasion have certainly been very conspicuous as he received little less than the adoration of the Hebrews. He is so strongly rivetted to the new doctrine, that he declares no human power will ever make him renounce it; and his habiliments and long beard are affirmed to be indispensably necessary. " When MacManus solicited his immediate departure from Birmingham his Lordship said that he could not comply with his request, the following day (Saturday) happening to be his Sabbath; and that if he was resolved for his departure, he must enforce it, because his conscience deemed it sinful to travel on the Sabbath. The officer then remarked, that, from the nature of his warrant, his Lordship might, if he pleased, give bail to any of His Majesty's Justices of the Peace, consequently delay their departure till the expiration of the Sabbath. To this his Lordship immediately complied, and gave the security requisite. The Jews continued to surround him, and evinced the highest respect for his person and intellectual faculties. " He talked frequently of his apostacy, and entered into an explanation of the reasons which led him to embrace the Jewish Faith, remarking that it was the greatest felicity of his life, and that he was astonished there were not more converts. Bestowing warm ecomiums (sic) on the elect, he observed that the whole Commonwealth of the Jews consisted of two descriptions of men?Hebrews and proselytes. He that was born an Hebrew, either by the father or mother's side, was an Hebrew ; but that he who was born so of both was an ' Hebrew of the Hebrew^/ and such a person was St. Paul (Phil. iii. 5). Continuing his observations, he recurred to the ancient regulation of the favoured nation, by saying that he who was born a proselyte, either by father or mother's side was termed Ben-ger, the son of a he-proselyte, or Ben-geraf the son of a she-proselyte; but he who was by father's and mother's side a proselyte was termed Bag-bag?that is, the son of a he and she proselyte. These learned illustrations we have been favoured with by a clerical correspondent, who is very well acquainted with his Lordship, and who has visited him since his recantation. " The journey from Birmingham to London was performed with un? common celerity. His Lordship and MacManus travelled in a post-chaise and four, and avoided every unnecessary delay on the road. " His Lordship had a Turkey and some other victuals dressed in the form of the Hebrews, which articles he carried with him; and mentioned that those who eat in any other manner than what has been prescribed by the law of Moses were an abomination. "As soon as he arrived in London, he was conveyed to Mr. Justice</page><page sequence="28">246 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. Buller's, and from thence, very early yesterday morning, was conducted to the King's Bench Prison, where he now remains, visited and caressed by the most opulent and religious Jews of the Kingdom. The disguise and oddity of his figure are so remarkable as almost to defy the recollection of those who formerly knew his Lordship." Gentleman's Magazine, Friday, December 7, 1787. Vol. lvii. p. 1121. ... "In the first interview between his Lordship and MacManus, it does not appear, however, that he endeavoured to conceal himself, though he made some scruple at first to travel on the Sabbath; yet, though he might have been bailed till the day following, he chose to surrender to the judge, by whose warrant he was apprehended." The London Chronicle, from Thursday, December 20, to Saturday, December 22, 1787. Vol. lxii., No. 4860. (Price threepence.) Extract of a Letter from a Clergyman in Birmingham " Lord George Gordon resided, whilst in Birmingham, in one of the dirtiest houses in Dudley Street, where the Jews chiefly inhabit: it is scarcely possible to suppose the meanness and wretchedness of the dwell? ing?the woman that owned has a son of much learning?who attracted the notice of his Lordship. This old Jewess used to hawk capers and anchovies about the streets of the town, but since her illustrious guest took up his abode with her, he maintained both her and her family; she gives a most nattering character of this unaccountable man, saying he is endowed with the most engaging manners, and possessed of the greatest learning of any one living : she must be a competent judge. He left them with the firm promise to be with them soon again, and to build them a new Synagogue, the present one being a most wretched edifice." The Dudley Street mentioned in this extract was practically the Jewish quarter, and the synagogue that Lord George Gordon attended was situated in a small street called the Froggery. W. Hutton, in An History of Birmingham, 1781, p. 122 (B.M. 578, C 13), thus describes the condition of the Jews and the synagogue: " We have also among us a remnant of Israel. A people who, when masters of their own country, were scarcely ever known to travel, and who are now seldom employed in anything else. But though they are ever moving, they are ever at home ; who once lived the favourites of heaven,</page><page sequence="29">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 247 and fed upon the cream of the earth; but now are little regarded by either; whose society is entirely confined to themselves, except in the commercial line. " In the Synagogue, situated in the Froggery, they still preserve the faint resemblance of the ancient worship, their whole apparatus being no more than the drooping ensigns of poverty. The place is rather small, but tolerably filled ; where there appears less decorum than in the Christian churches. The proverbial expression ' as rich as a Jew,' is not altogether verified in Birmingham, but perhaps time is transferring it to the Quakers. It is rather singular that the honesty of a Jew is seldom pleaded but by the Jew himself." The London Chronicle, from Saturday, December 15, to Tuesday, December 18, 1787. No. 4858, p. 579. Price threepence. "When Lord George Gordon was carried to the King's Bench he strongly solicited permission to walk at large amongst the rest of the prisoners, which was for obvious reasons peremptorily refused by the Marshal, who kept his Lordship in conversation, Lord George expressed his astonishment, how, in his then disguise, it was possible for any man to know him. To which the Marshal replied, he should have recollected him by his hair in any part of the world. 'No,' says his Lordship, 'you would not, with my hat on.' The experiment was made, and the growth of beard had worked so great an alteration that the Marshal readily acknowledged his mistake." The Public Advertiser, Thursday, December 13, 1787. No. 16714. Price Three-pence. " On the third day morning Lord George Gordon's family waited on him in the King's Bench Prison, also several members the most active in the Protestant Associations, but the Jews are not permitted to speak to his Lordship, and they deliver victuals for him to the Tipstaffs of the Judges at the foot of the staircase, and to the other attendant who the Marshal of the prison has appointed to wait on him." On January 8, 1788, he was brought up before the Court of King's Bench. " His Lordship made a very grotesque figure ; he was wrapped up in a great coat, his hair lank as usual, his beard about three inches long, extending under his chin and throat from ear to ear, and differing from the colour of his hair."</page><page sequence="30">248 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. The London Chronicle for January 26-29, 1788. " He was sentenced to three years' imprisonment in Newgate for the Botany Bay libel, to be followed by two years' imprisonment for the libel on the Queen of France. In addition to this, on his liberation he was to pay a fine of ?500 and find securities for his good behaviour for fourteen years, ?10,000 on his own account, and two other securities of ?2500 each." " Notwithstanding the weight of the condemnation," writes Picciotto, Sketches of Anglo-Jewish History, p. 186, "Lord George Gordon did not appear to modify his religious views. He remained as irrepressible as ever; from his prison he sent forth handbills full of scriptural quota? tions to be distributed, and he applied texts from scripture to the state of the King. This greatly exasperated the prison authorities, and the Governor threatened him with removal to a worse cell if he did not alter his conduct, so the circulation of the handbills had to be stopped." Whilst in prison, writes Myer Joseph, he was very regular in his Jewish observances. Every morning he was seen with his phylacteries between his eyes and opposite to his heart. Every Saturday he had a public service in his room by the aid of ten Polish Jews. He looked like a patriarch with his beautiful long beard. His Saturday's bread was baked, according to the manner of the Jews, his wine was Jewish, his meat was Jewish, and he was the best Jew in the congregation of Israel. On his prison wall were to be seen, first the ten commandments in the Hebrew language, then the bag of Talith, or fringed garment, and of the phylacteries. (Margoliouth, vol. ii. p. 123.) A paragraph in the Jewish Chronicle of October 4, 1867, p. 6, states : " The tradition of Lord George Gordon's conversion to Judaism is still afloat in the metropolitan Jewish Community, and there were a few years ago still co-religionists alive who well remembered the eccentric nobleman, and had seen him in their youth as he sat in his prison wrapped in his praying-scarf, the phylacteries on his forehead and arm, with a long beard reaching to his waist, devoutly reciting his prayers with minyon." "Lord George conformed very strictly to the rites of the Jewish Church; he fasted when the prophets enjoin fasting, mourned when they mourned, and rejoiced when they rejoiced. Talking freely with</page><page sequence="31"></page><page sequence="32">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 249 him one day on the subject of religion, I hinted how fatal his opinions on that subject had been to his interest; he replied, ' That no liberal man would advise him to act contrary to his conscience?that he, like others, was liable to be wrong; but he was open to conviction?he concluded with saying, very emphatically, that a toise man alters his opinion, but a fool never" (Watson, p. 109.) " . . . as he conformed to all the outward ceremonies of the ancient fathers himself, he expected the same conformity from those who professed a similar faith. This practice, to which he invariably adhered, induced him to refuse admittance to all those Jews who, in com? pliance with the modern customs, shaved their beards and uncovered their heads." (Watson, p. 89.) A Jew in necessitous circumstances, named Angel Lyon, desired a personal interview with Lord George Gordon with the object of obtain? ing relief. As he was beardless, the turnkeys at the prison, in deference to Gordon's wishes, declined to admit him. This led to a corre? spondence between Lyon and Gordon, which was issued in pamphlet form (8vo, 16 pp.). The publication is without name of publisher, place, or date. No copy is to be found in the British Museum or in any public library, so far as I am aware. Tl^e only other besides my own is now in the Asher I. Myers Collection, from the library of the late Alfred Alvarez Newman. (B.A.J., No. 398.)</page><page sequence="33">A LETTER FROM ANGEL LYON, TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LORD GEORGE GORDON, ON WEARING BEARDS; WITH LORD GEORGE GORDON'S ANSWER, AND A REPLY FROM ANGEL LYON.</page><page sequence="34">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 251 A LETTER FROM ANGEL LYON, TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LORD GEORGE GORDON, ON WEARING BEARDS. " My Lord,?Although I was unfortunate, not to meet your Lordship's approbation, on account of my beard being short; yet, I trust, your Lord? ship, when you consider the sending of Samuel to the house of Jesse, to anoint a king, and his being surprized that seven of the finest princes should pass before him unapproved, that God told Samuel, i People see with their eyes, but I see the heart.'?Just so, my Lord, is my situation? a true Jew, the son of misfortune, having seen better days in many parts of the world; but am now hardly able to maintain myself, wife, and children, with all our endeavours united.?Your Lordship's charitable dis? position numbers of our tribe speak daily of, and I hope God Almighty will put it into your heart to add to the number of your good works by relieving the troubled mind of, My Lord, your Lordship's most obedient and most humble servant, Angel Lyon. now humbly waiting your Lordship's answer, At No. 17, Northumberland Alley, Fenchurch-street, June 15,1789." LORD GEORGE GORDON'S REPLY " Angel Lyon, My answer is, that I will not admit thee. I have given a general order to the Turnkeys of the prison, to let in no Jews without beards, and I can see no reason to make thee an exception, as thy trans? gression is voluntary, I have considered the sending of Samuel to the house of Jesse, as desired in thy letter, and there is nothing to be drawn from that history in favour of thy argument. It is very true, 6 The Lord seeth not as man seeth ; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart'; yet this expression is not intended to abolish or contradict the laws of outward appearance among the Jews, but to teach that God sees through all outward appearances ; which, when unaccompanied with sincerity of heart, constitute hypocrisy. The Lord was pleased to chuse out David from among his seven brothers, because he knew the superior integrity of his heart, and his skilfulness to guide his people Israel; but the history does not insinuate, in the slightest manner, that any of the sons of Jesse were deficient, as Jews, in outward appear? ances, according to the law. They were all outwardly qualified for kings in the eyes of Samuel, or he would not have said of the first, who was</page><page sequence="35">252 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. afterwards rejected, * Surely the Lord's anointed is before him.' Samuel knew that a king, openly and outwardly contradicting the law and the example of God's people, would be an abomination, and not a deliverer, in Israel. David and his followers taught no new doctrines, in their dispersion or when they came to power, that can be brought to countenance thee at all in shaving off thy beard. The law expressly forbids it, the customs and manners of the Jews have always forbid it likewise. The difference in societies cannot be preserved without union and distinction: the one pre? vents division, the other confusion ; and the distinction is often kept up and ascertained by the variety of countenances. When David heard that Hanun, a heathen prince, had taken his servants and shaved them, he sent to meet them, saying, ' Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return' ; for the men were greatly ashamed of appearing tvithout beards?the Jews in those days, having a sense of shame in transgressing the law in their outward appearance : but in these days, there are Jews of all ranks, who are greatly ashamed of appear? ing with beards. The Jews who reside in England are particularly to be blamed. The poorer sort, when they arrive from abroad, are not encouraged to enter into the houses, or to teach in the families of the richer sort, as long as they wear their beards ; and the richer sort are ashamed of appear? ing with beards before the Christian merchants at the Exchange, and the nobility at the Playhouses. The Souls of these men are lifted up unto vanities, their pride is testified by their faces, they set them towards the Ammonites and not against them. They are ashamed of the outward and visible sign, given unto them by God himself, and commanded to be pre? served by Moses, because it distinguishes them as Jews, in public, from the nobility and gentry of these lands. But this is serving man and despising God, it is building up and confirming the dominion of pride in their dis? tractions and divisions, and erasing the foundation, subverting the com? pactness, and retarding the building of Jerusalem in our days. It is changing the law and altering it, so far as their bad examples and heathen imitations can mislead the unwary. The faces of such elders do not deserve to be honoured. The poor English Jews conform too much to their ways, with a view to partake of their charity ; and they all join together in discountenancing the zeal and policy of our brethren at Jerusalem and Constantinople, in France and in Poland, who know better the duty and the advantages of uniformity of manners in the nation, by wearing their beards in their different dispersions, and thereby acknowledging in their lives the truth of what Solomon teaches us, that as iron sbarpeneth iron, so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend. But the English Jews, instead of sharpening the countenances of their friends, at home or abroad, Do they not sharpen the countenances of our enemies, by shaving them? selves ? Do they not countenance and harden the Emperor of Germany, in</page><page sequence="36">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 253 his cruelly cutting off the beards of the Jews in his dominions, and forcing them to enlist in the Roman Catholic army, and become soldiers and crusaders against their brethren ? Many bad consequences might easily be pointed out ; but as they would lead too much to personality, in England as well as in foreign countries (which ought to be avoided as much as possible) let it be sufficient, at present to remind thee, that the practice of cutting off the beard, among the Jews, is in itself sinful; and that the pretences and excuses for doing so are false, mean, interested, temporizing, and Jesuitical. The fault, however, lies with the priest, more than with the people : he winks at the heathen customs of the rich English Jews, and grants them his dispensation for cutting off their beards, for the most trifling considerations. By this means, the poor fall into the snare set before them by the rich, and open contempt is poured upon the law of God, the causes of captivity are continued, and the threatenings of the prophets are dis? regarded. But, woe to these rebellious children, saith the Lord, that take counsel, but not of him; and that cover with a covering, but not of his spirit, that they may add sin to sin: that walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at his mouth ; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh (the fashions of strangers) and to trust in the shadow of Egypt: therefore shall the strength of Pharaoh (their shaving) be their shame ; and the trust in the shadow of Egypt their contusion. The shame and confusion that has lately been mournfully experienced in some rich families, who piqued themselves on the superiority of their taste, their politeness, and their high rank, may be imputed, in too great a degree, to the priest's silence; and similar practices and connections will inevitably prove the ruin and unhappiness of many more Jewish families, in England, if a speedy stop be not put to prevailing sins, without regarding the riches or situations of the transgressors. Let the shame and destruction of these rich families be an example and warning to others, how they put themselves out of the protection of Almighty God, either by propagating false doctrines, assuming false appearances, or encouraging forbidden alliances. Temporal honors and possessions have proved the ruin of thousands, after their accomplishment has been attained, by forsaking the law of God. They may rejoice for a time, and applaud themselves in their conceited successes and alliances; but misery and unhappiness, if they repent not, will be their end; and it is a great sign that God is very angry with them when he suffers them to thrive by means which himself hath cursed. Let none such be feared or envied, for the snare attends their store and their basket, their table and their connections. They are covetous and aspiring persons, apprehensive that a strict adherence to the ways of religion would be utterly inconsistent with their</page><page sequence="37">254 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. views of rising in the world; who make haste to be rich, and find religion would be an obstacle in their way;?who having formed a plan for making a fortune, or for obtaining preferment, resolve to mind nothing that would divert them from the prosecution of it;?who study to appear either luke? warm or zealous about the matters of God, as lukewarmness or zeal bids fairest to recommend them to the wealthy and the great; all these are temporizers from interesting and ambitious views. Others there are, who shave themselves from motives of dissipation ; whose time is so much engrossed by business, or amusements, that they have none left for think? ing deliberately on the command for outward appearance ; and find the duty of wearing their beards inconsistent with their favourite pursuits, or their favourite pleasures. Those of cowardly dispositions, who shave themselves to hide their faces from shame and reproach, are as much afraid of being accounted strict professors, as of being accounted abandoned profligates ; they have not the resolution to abide by the law, unless the world countenances them in it ; who dread the wrath of man more than the wrath of God, and love the praise of their fashionable connections, more than the praise of God ; who incessantly frighten themselves and others with terrible representations of the losses and hardships they are likely to suffer in adhering to the law and a good conscience ; who talk a great deal about prudence as the first of human virtues, by which they mean the art of keeping well with the world ; and a great deal about moderation, by which they mean a disposition to forbear being explicit or pointed in a religious profession before its avowed enemies: In short, men who have some conviction of the truth of their religion, but suppress that conviction so far as to neglect an outward appearance of it. These are temporizers from that fear of man which bringeth a snare. It is to be hoped therefore (as many seek the faces of the rulers) that those rich families, who tempted some learned Babbies from Germany to shave themselves before they would encourage them, will not persist any longer in their evil examples, to their own ruin, and the disgrace of the nation. I assure thee, Angel Lion, that my meaning is good, and for the honor and happiness of Israel, to promote union in all countries ; and I trust as thou art a man of experience, that this friendly admonition will be well received, without giving offence to thee or any other person. The nation has often been warned against following the vain fashions, and particularly the cuttings of the beard, which they would see practised in their dispersion. Beware, therefore, that ye in no wise be like to strangers, neither be ye afraid of them ; for it is written very justly of the Clergy and People, which the Jews were to see in their captivity in Babylon and other places,</page><page sequence="38">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 255 that ' they sit in their Temples with their heads and beards shaven, and nothing upon their heads' : but who that is wise and fears God will learn of them their ways ? Happy art thou, O Israel! what nation is like unto thee ? Thine enemies shall be found liars, and thou shall tread upon their high places. Yet we must not look for the blessings of the Almighty upon ourselves or our families if we despise his law, and set our faces against the example of his saints in former years. Tarry therefore, in Fenchurch-street, until thy beard is grown, and then return to thy sincere friend and servant, Israel Bar Abraham G. Gordon. Felon Side Newgate." ANGEL LYON'S ANSWER. TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE ISRAEL BAR ABRAHAM LORD G. GORDON. " Gar-Zadak, My Lord, The letter which your Lordship thought proper to honour me with, will for ever merit my best acknowledgments, as I am thereby made superlatively happy, in finding that the solid reasonings therein perfectly agree with my heart, and are conformable to the direc? tions of Almighty God, and to the sacred writings of our prophets. " I beg leave to declare for myself, that owing to your Lordship's few words and personal example, on the tenth of June, when I had the honour of waiting upon you, I took the resolution not to shave any more, which the bearer can personally testify. " The whole of your Lordship's letter is so just and strictly true, it will not admit of any reply, especially from one who is overwhelmed with trouble. Yes, my Lord, I will tarry readily, in the hope of seeing your Lordship, unless it shall please God to relieve me from it before the time comet h. " I beg leave to subscribe myself with the greatest respect, your Lordship's obliged, Ashur Bar Judah. ''June 24, 1789."1 " Ever since his confinement in Newgate, he had been visited by Britons of every description, and by foreigners from every quarter of the globe; the Jews looked upon him as a second Moses, and fondly hoped he wTas designed by Providence to lead them back to their father's land." (Watson, p. 89.) 1 Reprinted in the Jewish Chronicle, Aug. 25, 1905.</page><page sequence="39">256 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. " In a political sense, however, Lord George's compliance with the laws of Moses proved fatal to his interest?the rich Jews saw him no more?and as he had demonstrated that their customs were contrary to the law and the prophets, they, in revenge, adopted the ministerial cant of insanity, phrenzy, &amp;c. The Polish and Turkish Jews still came to see him in great numbers." (Watson, p. 90.) " Among his visitors was the wife of the Rev. Solomon Lyon of Cambridge, who called on him in Newgate and brought him food; she remembered him wearing a great beard." 1 (Jewish Chronicle, July 19, 1872, p. 221.) Gordon continued to write letters to people of note, and contributed paragraphs to the newspapers on political and social subjects. The following paragraph in a letter he addressed to the Abbe* Gregoire (1750-1831), President of the Committee of Reports of the National Assembly, who, although a Jesuit, was an advocate for the political emancipation of the Jews, is of considerable interest. It is dated from Felon Side, Newgate Prison, London, August 22, 1791: " Are the Jews too in France to be destroyed, because the Pope, that man of sin, his pretended holiness of Rome, has dared to point them out by name for desolation and massacre, in his late bull addressed to the refractory priests and rebels in France, to whom he gives his safety and apostolic benediction, and denominates those enemies of the National Assembly, his dearly beloved sons and his well beloved children ? Is the rage of the presumptuous spiritual tyrant roused also against this long oppressed people, because the Assembly has shewed them favour ? The Jews in France were indeed soon penetrated with admiration and respect, on beholding the multiplied acts of justice which proceeded from your Assembly, and they deposited in the midst of you the solemn testimony of their patriotism and devotedness : their solemn oath to sacrifice, in every instance, their lives and fortunes for the public good. One sole object rules and animates all their thoughts,?the good of their country, and a desire of dedicating to it all their strength. In that respect they will not yield to any inhabitants of France; they will dispute the palm with all the citizens, for zeal, courage and patriotism." (Watson, p. 117.) 1 It is interesting to note that this lady's daughter, Emma (1788-1870), who published a volume of poems in 1812, was the mother of the late Michael Henry (1830-75), at one time editor of the Jeioish Chronicle. An appeal has recently been made in the Jewish Press to replace the lifeboat which at his death was presented to the National Lifeboat Institution in his memory.</page><page sequence="40">Lord George Goiidon. Appendix No. 21</page><page sequence="41">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 257 On August 2, 1792, from Felon Side, Newgate Prison, he addressed a letter ''To W. Smith, Esq., M.P., Chairman of the Meeting in Support of the People of Poland, at the London Tavern." It has been printed in pamphlet form, and is to be seen in the British Museum (8093, bb. 16), 8vo, 3 pp. Page 2 ; ..." There has been something not sincere in the Polish Revolution, a sort of false pretence in favour of Liberty, which is now too apparent, and they themselves are suffering the fatal consequences of the deception. The Jews, you must be well acquainted, are above One Million in number in Poland. Can you declare to this meeting what advantages have already been granted to them by the New Constitution, or whether any promises of being advanced to an immediate participation of Citizenship are assured to them, by the present Diet? The Assembly of France, you know, has prudently admitted the Nation to the equal rights of Citizens. The Jews in France were soon penetrated with admiration and respect, on beholding the multiplied acts of Justice, which proceeded from that Assembly; and they deposited in the midst of them the solemn testimony of their patriotism and devotedness: their solemn oath to sacrifice, in every instance, their lives and fortunes for the public good; for the glory of the nation and the king. One sole object rules and animates all their thoughts, the good of their country, and a desire of dedicating to it all their strength. In that respect they will not yield to any inhabitants of France ; they will dispute the palm with all the citizens for zeal, courage, and patriotism. These are the very words and sentiments of the address presented to the National Assembly, from the Jews residing at Paris, by J. Goldschmit, their President, and Abraham Lopez Lagouna, Vice President ; M?ns. Wiel, J. Benjamin, and J. Fernandez, Electors of Israel; and Mordecai Levi, Lazarus Jacob, Trenelle Pere, Mordecai Elias, Joseph Pereyra Brandon, and M. del Campo, their Deputies. And I trust that these Presidents, Electors, and Deputies have not seen vain and foolish things for the Jews, by joining themselves to the Assembly, in the cause of the Nation's Liberty. But what encouragement does the present Diet hold out to the Polish Jews which they did not enjoy under the old Republican Government ? None at all. Is it natural then to suppose that their monied brethren and friends in England, France, and Holland, will be very ready to subscribe voluntarily to the support of the New Constitution of Poland, where the equal Rights of Citizens are still withheld from them? . . ." In the British Museum there is a rather quaintlittle chap-book (4418, f. 17 (12) sm. 8vo., 8 pp.) entitled, " The Christian turned Jew. Being VOL. VII. R</page><page sequence="42">258 LOUD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. the most Remarkable Life and Adventures of Lord G. G. With the Letter sent to him by a certain Great Lady, since his Confinement." On the title-page there is a rude woodcut figure supposed to represent Lord George Gordon, on p. 3 an illustration of pillaging a house during the riots, on p. 4 a portrait of Marie Antoinette, and on p. 6 Gordon in his cell in Newgate. The letter referred to on the title-page is printed on p. 6, and runs as follows : "The following letter, we are informed, was sent to him, since his confinement in Newgate, by a noble Lady, who is nearly related to him :? "My Lord, It is with the greatest concern that I now write to you, but the honour of my family, and the tye of blood, force admonition from me. If the safety of your own person is become indifferent to you, how will you justify the stigma you have, by misconduct, thrown upon your noble relations ? " For shame! for shame, my Lord ! Look back into History, survey the noble actions of your ancestors, and compare them with your own. " Worth makes the man, and want of it the fellow, The rest is all but leather, or prunello. "G.n." There is nothi?g in the chap-book that I have not referred to, but the last two pages are occupied by some rather humorous doggerel verses on Gordon's conversion and his stay with the Jewrs in Birmingham. A COPY OF VERSES Ye Jews, Turks, and Christians, I pray now draw near, When a comical ditty you quickly shall hear, Concerning Lord George, who for Protestant laws, His life said he'd lose in so glorious a cause. Derry down, &amp;c. In seventeen hundred and eighty's fam'd year. At the head of the Protestants he did appear, When prisons came down, and houses did burn, Who'd have thought that his Lordship a Smouchy wou'd turn.</page><page sequence="43">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 259 Next the poor Queen of France, who to us ne'er did ill, Was attacked by Lord George with his venom? ous quill, But 0, had he done it on her side of the water, He'd have clos'd his career in a Frenchify'd halter. Then to Birmingham posted my Lord in a trice, And because that his stomach it was very nice, He swore that no pork or fat bacon he'd eat, For the devil was conjur'd into that foul meat. To a Jew he is turn'd, with a beard long as goat, The Mosaical Law he has now got by rote, What a glorious defender of Protestant Laws, With pork or fat bacon I'd well rub his jaws. A snogo he promis'd the Smouches to build, With what glorious ideas his nob must be fill'd, First a Protestant leader, the head of them all, Now this Christian is turn'd and a Jew we him call. So we wish them much joy of this new convert Jew, Tho' my tale it is odd, yet Pm sure it is true, So farewel, my Lord, since to Newgate you're taken, You may find it a hard case to save your own bacon. Gordon did not even escape the street balladmonger. I cannot give you the tune to which these verses were sung to, up and down the highways and byways of the country, but will read you the words. It is entitled " The Christian turned Jew," and is headed by a woodcut supposed to represent Gordon, but seems to me to be King Henry VIII. (Circa 1792?own collection): George profession was once a Christian sound, Think what a strange digression, the like was never found, So rivetted within his head the Jewish tenets seenij That mother kirk would find out work, the sinner to reclaim.</page><page sequence="44">260 LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. Doodle doodle do, what will this world come to Who, by his look, would e'er have took, George G.for a Jew. This strange eccentric's been too apt to change his road, In Birmingham, not long since, took up his snug abode, The man of faith, in modern gait, would think his Lordship mad, To see him run from Calvin John, and join the tribe of Gad. Doodle doodle do, what will this world come to, Twelve years ago would anyone have taken him for a Jew ? To London when they brought him, his charge to undergo, The rabbies fondly sought him, their homage to avowT, There's some wrho came, that knew his fame, with joy and rapture said, Be slander dumb, there's Moses come, just risen from the dead. Doodle doodle do, George G.'s turn'd a Jew. His Christian flock gave such a shock, they knew not what to do. Altho' the laws may curb him, and perhaps fears him alarm, 'Twere a pity to disturb him, he means no kind of harm, To NewTgate tho' compell'd to go from what to sense appear'd, At joaks and scoffs he only laughs, and stroaks his comely beard. Doodle doodle do, my tale tho' strange is true, And certainly Lord G.must be the jewel of a Jew." The interest that was taken in Lord George Gordon and his doings was demonstrated by a remarkable speech of a strange character, desig</page><page sequence="45">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 261 nated Sir Jeffrey Dunstan, during a still more remarkable election. This was the burlesque election of the member for Garrett, a collection of tumbledown houses on the road between Wandsworth and Tooting. This seat was contested at every General Election, when the candidates, who were men of low origin chosen for their ready tongue and homely wit, were given high-sounding titles. On this occasion, when members of the aristocracy had coached down to watch the humorous proceed? ings, Sir Jeffrey Dunstan's (?) opponent was Sir Harry Dimsdale, Bart., M.P. (?). In the election address of the former the following quaint and interesting passages appeared: "Like the great men, I pledge my honour, life, and fortune, that I will remove all heavy taxes, and by a glorious scheme, contrived by me and my friend Lord George Gordon, I shall, by a philosophical, aristocratical ther? mometer, or such-like hydraulics, discover the longitude among the Jews of Duke's Place and the secret of Masonry. . . . Though my Lord George has turned Jew, and wears a broom about his chin, I never intend to do so until his informer is dead, or the time elapsed of his imprisonment in the county castle, when we shall both go into Duke's Place and be sworn true friends; then woe be to the informing busy bookseller of Spitalfields, who was lately turned out of the Snogo for eating pork wTith the rind on. Depend upon it his windows shall chatter more Hebrew than he ever understood. All this shall be done by me in spite of him. Yes, by me, your humble servant, Sir Jeffrey Dunstan, M.P." (Hone's Everyday Booh, 1838, vol. ii., column 832.) Burke, in his Reflections on the French Revolution, takes occasion thus to introduce the conduct and character of Lord George Gordon : ..." We have Lord George Gordon fast in Newgate; and neither his being a publick proselyte to Judaism, nor his having, in his zeal against catholic priests and all sorts of ecclesiastics, raised a mob (excuse the term, it is still in use here) which pulled down all our prisons, have preserved to him a liberty of which he did not render himself worthy by a virtuous use of it. We have rebuilt Newgate, and tenanted the Mansion. We have prisons almost as strong as the Bastille, for those who dare to libel the queens of France. In this spiritual retreat, let the noble libeller remain. Let him there meditate on his Thalmud, until he learns a conduct more becoming his birth and parts, and not so disgraceful to the ancient religion to which he has become a proselyte ; or until some persons from your side of the water, to please your new Hebrew brethren, shall ransom him. He</page><page sequence="46">262 LORD. GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. may then be enabled to purchase, with the old hoards of the Synagogue, and a very small poundage, on the long compound interest of the thirty pieces of Silver (Dr. Price has shewn us what miracles compound interest will perform in 1790 years), the lands which are lately discovered to have been usurped by the Galliean Church. Send us your popish archbishop of Paris, and we will send you our protestant Rabbi." (Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, newT edition, vol. v. p. 163. London, 1808.) Amongst a thousand things injurious to his character, it had gone abroad that he kept two Jewish handmaids with him night and day? nothing could be more false. He indeed kept two maid-servants, one of whom was a Jewess, and the other a Christian, but they regularly left the prison at nine o'clock at night and returned at eight in the morning (Watson, pp. 108-9). Charles Dickens in the last chapter of Barnaby Rudge says, " He had one other constant attendant in the person of a beautiful Jewish girl, who attached herself to him from feelings half religious, half romantic, but whose virtuous and disinterested character appears to have been beyond the censure of even the most censorious." I have in my collection a stipple engraving described in Evans' second catalogue of engraved portraits, "No. 18381?Miss Levy, a Jewish Courtesan" (P.B.L., 4to., 3/-). My copy, which is also in proof state, has the following inscription on the margin in a contemporary hand : " Polly Levi, Jewess in attendant [sic] on Lord George G?rden [sic], during his confinement in Newgate." She is represented holding a tray on which is a decanter. The defamatory description by the cataloguer was no doubt brought about by the malicious slanders circulated by the enemies of Lord George Gordon. At last on the 28th of January 1793, Gordon's sentence had expired, but he had yet to appear before the judges and give sureties for his future good behaviour. The Public Advertiser, Tuesday, January 29, 1793 (No. 18294. Price threepence-halfpenny), gives the following remarkable description of the scene: " On entering the Court with his head covered, there was a call in the Court to ' Take off your hat !' but he refused to take* it off. The Lord Chief Justice Kenyon was not on the Bench, and Mr. Justice Buller ordered the officers of the Court to take off his hat, which they effected after some</page><page sequence="47">I s i ' . j j .1 ]_ - - i_.. _ ? * ?. " ?1?L_i Appendix No. 23</page><page sequence="48">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 263 resistance on his part, he declaring that they offered violence to his religion and person, in what they did to him by force. He then put on a thick white night-cap, and bound his head round with a red and white hand? kerchief, in the shape of a turban. The Chief Justice then taking his seat on the Bench, Lord George recited to him that violence had been used towards him, in the matter of the hat-honour, by Judge Buller's order, and asked the Chief Justice, as President of the Court, whether he agreed with his Brother Buller in the propriety of that order? Lord Kenyon, in a very mild manner, said, ' If I had been in the Court, I should have directed your hat to be taken off.' "Lord George then said that as offence had been taken by Judge Buller where no contempt was intended, he requested the Court to receive a Petition from him, explaining his motives. Lord Kenyon ordered the Petition to be received, and Mr. Barlow, the Clerk of the Court, read it aloud (the Petition, on account of the great press of matters of import? ance, we are under the necessity of deferring till to-morrow)." The copy of this paper is however not in the British Museum, so I wall read an extract relating to the Petition, from The Morning Chronicle, London, Tuesday, January 29, 1793. No. 7380. Price fourpence: " His Lordship then proceeded to state by Petition, which he pre? sented to the Court, under the description of Israel Abraham Gordon, commonly called Lord George Gordon, his reasons for appearing before the Court with his head covered. The Petition stated that he did so from tenderness of conscience, and not from contempt of Court. It contained many quotations from Scripture in support of the propriety of the Creature having the head covered in reverence for the Creator. It stated also, that the Dukes of York, Clarence, and Gordon, several Members of the National Assembly of France, etc. etc., had visited him in Newgate, and had not expressed any disapprobation of his receiving them with his head covered, and that therefore the petitioner hoped the Court would perceive that he appeared before them in that manner from motives of piety, etc. etc." T. J. HowelFs State Trials, 1817, vol. xxii. pp. 235-6, gives the following description : " The petition was read by an officer of the Court and contained many arguments drawn from the Jewish writers in favour of appearing with head covered before all men. The sentence against him for the libels was, at his request, read, after which he read a written paper; the substance of which was, that he had been imprisoned for five years among murderers, thieves, &amp;c, and that all the consolation he had arose from his trust in God."</page><page sequence="49">264 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. My er Joseph relates that " ... he brought two poor Polish Israelites as guarantees. The Court could not accept them because of their poverty. The rich Jews would do nothing towards assisting the prisoner for fear of persecution" (Margoliouth, vol. ii. pp. 123-4). So he had to return to his cell. Towards the end of the year he was attacked by a fever which baffled the skill of Dr. Lettsom who attended him. He died on the 1st of November 1793 at the age of forty-two. His last moments were additionally embittered by the knowledge that he could not be buried amongst the Jewrs, whose religion he some time since embraced, and to which he was warmly attached. His remains were interred on the 9th, with the utmost privacy, in a vault in St. James's burying ground, on the Hampstead Road. " Thus lived and thus died Lord George Gordon, the enemy of tyrants, and the friend of the oppressed, a man of the strictest virtue, the greatest philanthropy, and the most unsullied honour." (Watson, p. 137.) It is true that his mental stability has been questioned. Horace Walpole refers to him as " the lunatic apostle" (Wdlpole's Letters to the Countess of Osso?*y, 1848, vol. i. p. 402, Letter clix.). Hume gravely asserts in his History of England (cf. Picciotto, p. 185) that this noble? man gave afterwards undoubted proofs of insanity by turning Jew. This can scarcely be admitted as evidence, the rejection of one faith and the adoption of another has never been put forward as indicating a mind diseased. One cannot imagine such a plea, in a case of a Jew turning Christian. As is not an unusual occurrence with proselytes, Gordon was a zealot and an enthusiast for his new faith. His antipathy to Papists, and abhorrence of the Jesuits and their political scheming, are shared this very day by millions of people both Jew and Gentile, without any doubt being cast upon their sanity. Had Lord George Gordon lived in this generation he would not have perished miserably in a prison cell; but would have been regarded as a great and noble character and accorded the honour he merited. Jews, like others who read of Gordon's career, will be divided in their estimates of him. But I, for one, cherish his memory, not because he was a " Proselyte of Righteousness," ply but because of the love he bore our people and our cause, which he championed in this and other lands. Hence I conclude with the ancient invocation, " May his soul be bound up in the bundle of life," 'n f2 V '3 'n</page><page sequence="50"></page><page sequence="51">APPENDIX Engraved Portraits, Caricatures, etc., in the Collection of the Writer (1) Lord George Gordon. Publish'd 1st July 1780, by Fielding &amp; Walker, Pater Noster Row. Line Engraving, 6 in. x 3J in. From Westminster Magazine, June 1780. It also forms the frontispiece of " The Trial of Hon. Gr. Gordon," by W. Vincent, 1781. (2) The Mob destroying &amp; Setting Fire to the Kings Bench Prison &amp; House of Correction in S* Georges Fields. Publish'd the 1st of Aug8* 1780, by Fielding &amp; Walker, Pater Noster Row. Etching, 7 in. x 12J in. From Westminster Magazine, July 1780. (3) Lord George Gordon, President of the Protestant Association. A. Southwark Division. C. Westminster Division. B. London Division. D. Scotch Division. Drawn from the Life by R. Bran. Published by E. Evans, 1, Gt Queen Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields. Line Engraving, 12J in. x 8| in. The British Museum has a similar impression, but issued by another publisher. " London, Published as the Act directs, Aug* 4, 1780 ; by John Harris, Sweetings Alley, Cornhill?Price Is." (4) Lord George Gordon. Engraved for the Universal Magazine. Printed for T. Hinton, at the Kings Arms, in Paternoster Row. Line Engraving, 5| in. x 3| in. From the Universal Magazine, February 1781. 265</page><page sequence="52">266 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. (5) An Exact Representation of the Burning and Destruction of Newgate by the Rioters, on the memorable 7th of Iune 1780. O'Neil del. H. Roberts sc. London, Publish'd as the Act directs, July 10th, 1781, by P. Mitchell, North Audley Street, Grosvenor Square, and J. Fielding, N? 23, Pater Noster Row. Etching, 11 in. x 17 in. (6) The R* Honble Lord George Gordon, President of the Pro? testant Association. Engraved (from a likeness taken by Mr Tassie) by C. Knight. London, Publish'd Aug. 12, 1783, by T. Mowat, N? 11 Princes Street, &amp; to be had of Mr Lewis, Carver, Newport Street. Stipple Engraving, 3| in. x 2^ in. oval. (7) N? xvi. The Meretricious Fair. N? xvii. Lord Crop. London, Publish'd by A. Hamilton, Junr, Fleet Street, July 1 ; 1786. Line Engraving, 3J in. x 2J in.?each portrait?oval. From the Town and Country Magazine. Lord Crop, i.e. Lord George Gordon. (8) The Right Honble Lord George Gordon, President of the Protestant Association. I. de Fleur Pinxt: Trotter Sculpt; Line Engraving, 5 in. x 3| in. From New London Magazine, November 1787. (9) Another Impression, without name of Artist or Engraver. (10) The R* Honble Lord George Gordon, President of the Pro? testant Association In the Year 1780. Pubd March 29, 1805, by R. S. Kirby, London House Yard, &amp; Pauls. Stipple Engraving, 3J in. x 2J in. From Kirby's Wonderful and Eccentric Museum, vol. iii. page 225. London, 1805. (11) The R* Honble Ld G. Gordon. Mezzotint Engraving, 3J in. x 2J in., oval.</page><page sequence="53">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 267 (12) The Birmingham Moses. To Law &amp; Presbyters he bid adieu, To save his Soul &amp; Body in the Jew; And wonder not he stole to misbelievers, Since they of stolen things are oft receivers ; But Justice their strange Proselyte found out And lodged the Runaway in prison stout, Lest he, mad flaming Bigot, should surprise The Christians his new friends to naturalize. Designed by Runaway. Executed by L?d G-G. Pubd. for the Proprietor as the Act directs by W. Dickie, No. 195, Strand, Dec 12th, 1787. Etching, 5J in. x 6 in. Coloured. This is probably the earliest illustration of Gordon as a Jew, being published five days after his arrest in Birmingham. He is pictured walking with an open book in hand, inscribed " Mosaic Law." A weathercock is seen on a hillock, alluding to his change of faith. On the foreground is inscribed " Protestant Association." Two dogs are seizing him, their collars marked "Bow Street " and " King's Bench." (13) Moses G?rden, or the Wandering Jew. In the Dress he now wears in Newgate. Pub. Jany 5, 1788, by A. Davis, Birmingham. Etching, 7J in. x 6J in. Coloured. Lord George Gordon attired as a Jew " Oie Clo " man. From his right hand some rabbit-skins are hanging, and he has a bag under his left arm for sundry purchases. It may be noted that this caricature was published in Birmingham (where he entered the Jewish pale) exactly one month after his arrest there. A reduced facsimile appeared in the Jeivish Chronicle, Dec. 7, 1906. (14) Pen and Ink Drawing of the above, but without the bag and rabbits. Initialed I. L. N. The original sketch for the caricature. (?) (15) The Triumph. Published Jany 17, 1788, by T. Harmar, N? 164 Piccadilly. Etching, 12 in. x 18J in. Coloured. This caricature print illustrates the defeat of Daniel Mendoza, the Jew pugilist, by Richard Humphries, January 9, 1788. He is seated on the ground</page><page sequence="54">268 LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. apparently insensible, supported at the back by an old Jew, and vomiting blood, which another Jew at his side is attempting to stanch. Lord George Gordon in the background, bearded but without his hat on, is looking into a volume on which is inscribed '* TALMUD." Under this group of figures on the foreground this inscription is printed : " Lo, he was sorely bruised &amp; much dismayed for he had been dealt heavily with ; then came certain of his Tribe &amp; ministered unto him, among the rest a Man named G: Moses, lately a Convert to their faith." (G. Moses = Moses Gordon = Lord George Gordon.) Humphries the victor is being chaired by the Prince Regent, afterwards George IV., Alderman Newnham, and others. Colonel Hanger, afterwards Lord Coleraine, is supporting a banner, showing Humphries in fighting attitude, and on which is inscribed: "Long live Humphries the Victorious, who in a bloody fight overcame the 12 Tribes of Israel. Hallelu. Halle." A figure standing on a hillock is trumpeting forth, " The Hero of the World " ; he is holding a paper inscribed: " Fashionable Advertiser, J : Bell &amp; C?." Under this group of figures on the foreground this inscription is printed: "And many of the chief Men of the Land assembled on this Occasion, &amp; the Magistrates of the City; so that there was a great Multitude, yea verily a mixed Multitude, &amp; they rent the Air with Shouts &amp; Acclamations." (16) Moses Chusing his Cook. Published Feb. 11, 1788, by T. Harmar, Engraver, No. 164, Piccadilly. Etching, lOf in. x 13| in. (17) Another Impression, coloured. (18) A reissue. Pubd April 1st, 1803, by S. W. Fores, 50 Piccadilly. (19) Another Impression, coloured. A reduced facsimile of print (19) appeared in Jewish Chronicle, December 7, 1906. Lord George Gordon is seated at a table in his cell in Newgate without his hat on, but bearded. With him are ten Polish Jews, who are offering him dishes of (kosher) food. A turnkey (?) is bringing in a sucking pig on a dish, to the consternation of two of the Jews, one of whom is tightly gripping his nostrils with his finger and thumb to avoid inhaling the odour. It may be noted that the caricaturist has ten Jews with Gordon, the number requisite for public worship, which he held in his cell.</page><page sequence="55">LORD GEORGE GORDON'S CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 269 (20) The Riot in Broad Street on the Seventh of June 1780. To the Gentlemen of the London Light Horse Volunteers, and Military Fort Association, This Memorial of their Patriotic Conduct, is Inscribed by their obliged Servants. John Et Josiah Boydell. Painted by Fras Wheatley. Engrav'd by Jas Heath. Publish'd Sep1' 29*\ 1790, by John &amp; Josiah Boydell, Cheapside, &amp; at the Shakspeare Gallery, Pall Mall, London. Line and Stipple Engraving, 16| in. x 23? in. (21) Lord George Gordon. From a miniature painted by M1' Polack. G. Wilson sculp. Pub. as the Act directs by G. Wilson, No. 21 Duke's Court, St. Martin's Lane. Line and Stipple Engraving, 3? in. x 2\ in.?oval?printed in colours. Attired as a Jew, with beard and slouched hat. A reduced facsimile from this print appeared in the Jewish Chronicle, Dec. 7, 1906. The British Museum print room contains this portrait but not in colours. It is without inscription, as the margin has been cut away, but is, however, accompanied by an interesting note from the engraver:?"The Painting from which this is done was executed in Water Colours of the same size by Mr Polack, from Lord George Gordon while in Newgate : k is allowed to be the best likeness of him extant. After his death it was thought advisable to make a Print from it, which was done?but the painting was bought up by the Gordon family? &amp; all the Prints were destroy'd but 2 that escaped notice?this is one saved? &amp; Mr Solomon. Picture Dealer, Pall Mall, had the other. " Geo. Wilson. Presented by Miss Charlotte Eleanor Wilson, 63 Newman Street, July 6th, 1835. Reported, July 9th, 1835. See Catalogue of the Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition, 1887, No. 114. The reproduction in the Jewish Encyclopedia is probably taken from the British Museum copy. Solomon Polack, the painter of this portrait, was a native of The Hague, where he was born in 1757. He died at Chelsea in 1839 and was buried at the Brompton Road Cemetery (Row 17) of the Western Synagogue. He also painted a miniature of Victor Abraham, a facsimile of which appears facing page 22 in "The Western Synagogue" by Matthias Levy (5658 = 1897). In addition to these two miniatures, a portrait of " Myer Levy, principal reader of the new synagogue," 4to, bears the name of " s. polack, litho" (Evans' Catalogue of Portraits, No. 18380) (Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition, 1887, No. 1001). He engraved the title-pages of editions of our service books and was also</page><page sequence="56">270 LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. an engraver of book plates, specimens of which are much sought after by col? lectors (Jeivish Chronicle, June 21, 1912). A son of Mr. Polack, miniature painter, of the Strand, married Queen Pomare of Tahiti. (Jewish Chronicle, September 24,1880, page 6 ; signed P. A., i.e. Philip Abraham.) (22) [Lord George Gordon]. Mezzotint Engraving, 11 in. x 8J in. Proof before letters. Probably issued in this state only. The following inscription in pencil on the margin? " Lord George Gordon: during the latter part of his imprisonment; he suffered his beard to grow, and dressed himself in this peculiar habit." Unknown to Chaloner Smith. A reduced facsimile appeared in the Jeivish World, Oct. 19, 1906, from the only other copy known, in the possession of Lucien Wolf, Esq. A note under the illustration of the Jewish World states that the only other copy known was in the British Museum. This is incorrect, as the British Museum has no specimen of this print, but has the engraving of Gordon as a Jew that was done after the portrait by Polack. Bromley's Catalogue, 1793, page 329. Lord George Gordon, with his beard, as an Israelite. Evans' First Catalogue of Portraits, No. 4496, Lord George Gordon, attired as a Jew, with long beard, fol. proof, 4s. (23) [Polly Levi]. Stipple, 6 in. x 5 in. Proof before letters. Probably only issued in this state. On the margin in a contemporary hand: *1 Polly Levi, Jewess in attendant (sic) on L. George G?rden (sic) During his confinement in Newgate." Truman Sale at Messrs. Sotheby, Wilkinson &amp; Hodge, March 19, 1906. Lot 137: "Girl with a tray and decanter, said to be Polly Levi attending on Lord George Gordon, proof before any letters." W. Bond is catalogued as the en? graver. The following note was on the back of the engraving: " Ozias Humphrey pinx. W. Bond sculp. London. Published January 2nd, 179 (?) by J. Thane, Spur Street. A reduced facsimile appeared in Jewish Chronicle, Dec. 7, 1906. (24) Another Impression. Printed in Brown.</page><page sequence="57">LORD GEORGE GORDON^ CONVERSION TO JUDAISM. 271 Copper Tokens (25) [Lord George Gordon] As a Jew with beard and slouched hat. On the reverse :?" Lord George Gordon, 1780." (26) Ld. Geo. Gordon. Died in Newgate, Nov. 1, 1793. Similar portrait to above. On the reverse: " The beginning of Opression " ; " Cain " under an upstanding figure with a club, " Abel" under a prostrate figure. (27) Ld. Geo. Gordon. Died in Newgate, Nov. 1, 1793. Similar portrait to above. On the reverse: "Honour," and an open hand with a heart in the palm, and at the wrist "James." On the edge of these three tokens, " Spence, Dealer in Coins, London." Note.?The paper was illustrated by lantern slides showing Mrs. Samuel Yates; Elias Lindo; Broadside Letter from Lord George Gordon to Elias Lindo and Nathan Salomon; Michael Josephs; Sarah Lyon; Rabbi Tevele Schiff; Title-page of "Angel Lyon to Lord George Gordon on wearing Beards "; Title-page of chap book " Christian turned Jew " ; Broadside Ballad " Christian turned Jew; in addition to Nos. 2, 3, 5, 12, 13, 15, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23 of the Prints, &amp;c, contained in the List given above.</page></plain_text>

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